Impressively, Thai tourism is up 15% in numbers and 24% in income on 2011. Top source countries are China followed by Malaysia, Japan, Russia, South Korea, India, Laos, Australia, the UK and Singapore, with Phuket the favourite island destination in South East Asia.
Phuket Airport amassed a record 9.5 million arrivals and departures in 2012, up 13% on the previous year, outstripping Pattaya, Koh Samui and Chang Mai. Hotels are running at a minimum 75% occupancy and the airport is currently being expanded to cope.
The emphasis is now on wealth rather than the mass market with a whole new source of property buyers keen on condo-style resorts in particular – something that the Kingdom lacks. Leading European development company, Beach Projects, has recently relocated its HQ to Thailand and taken a keen interest in this trend. It is now building luxury investment grade beach properties in Phuket accordingly.
Roy Hanif, partner in Beach Projects, explains: “Tourists quickly convert to property investors as they fall in love with the year-round 30C warmth, sunshine and legendary scenery. Also, living costs are a third of those in Europe and HSBC ranks Thailand number two in its Expat Explorer Survey, especially praising its quality of life.
“There is a new wave of demand from overseas, and Phuket’s local middle class population, for luxurious, spacious condo resorts with establishments such as the Banyan Tree booking out way in advance, so we’re building Silver Beach in Phuket to go some way to satisfying this.”
Roy continues: “While capital appreciation is currently minimal on land and villas, according to the Bank of Thailand condos have increased on average in value by 10% over the past five years, so the investment potential is massive. Clients can realise that 10% anticipated return if they buy off-plan and sell on completion or take advantage of rental income of between 8% and 12% net per annum thanks to a 250 day high season.”
The Russians and Chinese lead the way with 30% of buyers on the Island coming from Russia alone with Indians hot on their heels. Resorts with sea views are the most popular yet the hardest plots to come by. Silver Beach ticks that box having purchased tracts of private beach to accompany their five-star European-build quality project.
Designed by Bangkok-based Harvard-educated architect Bill Bensley, the “King of exotic luxury resorts” according to Time Magazine, Silver Beach Phuket is a peaceful residential oasis set next to the beautiful Laem Hin nature reserve on the Thai island’s coveted east coastline.
Enclosed by the crystal clear waters of the Andaman Sea on one side and mangrove forest on the other, these five-star luxury gated properties sit on private beaches with resort-quality facilities, from freeform swimming pools with swim-up bars to various restaurants and a clubhouse.
Within Silver Beach, transportation is by eco-friendly golf carts whilst boats are on hand for decadent days island hopping. Step outside Silver Beach and all of Phuket’s Spas, boutiques, restaurants, bars and sports facilities, including seven golf clubs and various marinas, are within close proximity.
Freehold and leasehold
Studio, one, two and three bedroom apartments are available at Silver Beach starting from £117,000. Payment terms are 35% down with the rest payable in stages according to project milestones. Silver Beach offers no rental guarantees but will install its own on-site management company with rental returns conservatively pitched at a minimum of 10% per annum, net.
Purchasers are eligible to participate in the rental management scheme at their own discretion but, if they do, must choose from one of the four furniture packs (Beach Cottage, Hemingway, Urban Shore or Tom Yam Thai) to ensure high standards within the development.
Freehold and leasehold ownership schemes are in operation, drawn up by global law brand Baker & McKenzie. Under Thai condo laws, 51% of the total saleable area of units must be owned by Thai nationals, while 49% can be owned by non-Thai nationals. Therefore, approximately 49% of the total saleable area of the units in Silver Beach will be sold freehold with the remaining 51% transferred to Thai SPVs and leased to buyers under the continuously renewing three x 30 year ‘full ownership’ leasehold scheme.
Contact Beach Projects via their website at: www.beachprojectsuk.com